Town set for festive sparkle

The blessing of the crib at Town End, Kirkham from a previous year

The blessing of the crib at Town End, Kirkham from a previous year

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Kirkham residents and business owners are eagerly looking forward to festive sparkle galore – thanks to a Christmas lights switch-on tomorrow evening which is the result of a concerted community effort.

It’s the first in the town in recent times, following the annually-held blessing of the crib with a procession and ceremony to unveil the lights which have been made possible thanks to thousands of pounds being raised through donations.

The free family-friendly event is organised by the Kirkham Christmas Lights Group, which consists of business owners and residents who were determined to ensure the town had a festive lights display of its own.

The group’s vice-chairman Heidi Hopkinson, of Serendipity House in Poulton Street, said: “We have been overwhelmed by the donations from local businesses and positive support from residents. It’s a real community effort.”

The evening will begin at 6pm from Town End, with traditional carols and songs from local primary school children.

The blessing of the crib will be performed by Rev Rick Bunday from St Michael’s Church and will be followed by a torchlight procession along Poulton Street, to congregate on Market Square where there will be a stage.

Anastasia Kuksinova, an 11-year-old pupil of Medlar with Wesham School, the winner of a children’s Christmas lights colouring competition run by the organisers, will then be invited to press the button to switch on the town’s Christmas lights, followed by more live performances, with the Makapaka Party Band topping the bill.

The schedule for the evening’s festive events at Market Square is: 6.45pm Children’s choir; 7pm Fylde Coast Youth Theatre Company; 7.15pm Chairman’s Speech followed by Lights Switch-On at 7.30pm; 7.35pm Eclipse; 7.55pm Vocalist Beth Ackers; 8.20pm The Makapaka Party Band.

There will be stalls serving hot food, with mulled wine, hot chocolate and other beverages available to buy, while local shops will be also be open for browsing and buying during the event.

Poulton Street will be closed to vehicles from 6pm, with diversions in place. Marshals will help and advise the public during the evening and the Red Cross shop will also be assisting with any medical issues.